A Trip to Jurassic Park By Capt Justin SuarezBen Secrest
It’s been twenty four hours since I got back from the most epic week of fishing yet. When I close my eyes I can still hear the drag screaming, the triumphant and celebratory hoots and hollers, and the sounds of billfish slicing the cobalt blue waters of Costa Rica.
We headed down to Los Suenos via JFK airport and by 1:30pm we were settled into our gorgeous condo in Los Suenos. The first day we planned to explore the area and get a taste of what is was like to live a”pura vida.” First on the list was crocodile feeding followed by hopping on Quads and ripping up some mud. It was a bit torturous the first day knowing that the hungry waters off of Los Suenos and its epic sailfish fishery awaited us.
The crocodile tour was actually amazing. There are an inconceivable number of North American Crocodiles in the Tarcoles River and it was simply unbelievable. These crocs owned this river and they were most definitely in charge. We slowly traveled the river taking pictures and viewing these massive creatures but as we approached a muddy cove I realized the unthinkable was about to happen. Our captain tied the boat to a pvc pole he inserted into the mud and hopped out with bait in his hands and began to tease and feed a Crocodile that was all of 18 feet long! I couldn’t believe what I was witnessing and how calm our captain was while he sank into the MUD with a giant COW eating crocodile. Flat out nuts! After we took some pics and videos we asked the Capt to get back in the boat. We saw a few more crocodiles and our captain hopped out a couple more times leaving us asking ourselves if he had some type of neurological dysfunction or lacked the gene that helped him process fear. We continued down the river in absolute awe of the natural geographic and soon we were back at the dock all of us including the captain retaining all our limbs.
We headed to a farm not far from Los Suenos and it was here that we had some childish fun! We got on our quads and rode through mud, small rivers, creeks, jungle, waterfalls and farmland. It was a total blast and for two hours we almost forgot that first thing in the morning we would be boarding the sportfishing vessel, The Epic and targeting some acrobatic, water slicing Sailfish. So we headed back to the condo got ready, had dinner and slept with the sounds and the sweet lullabies of drags screaming in our dreams.
We woke up just before dawn to the sound of a flock of scarlet macaws squawking as they flew passed our condo. Within 15 mins we were all ready for our adventure on the water. Cameras,sunscreen, hoorags, sunglasses, and an insatiable appetite to catch Sailfish on 8lb test…CHECK!
We piled onto our golf cart and took off for the marina at Los Suenos. What a sight to see a couple hundred 60foot plus sportfishing battle wagons docked and getting ready to hit the road. We met up with Capt Mike from Epic Sportfishing and hopped aboard a beautifully appointed 34′ L&H. This was a perfect boat for the fishing we were going to get into. As we took shots of the scenic view that unraveled before us, my mind started to drift into a day-dream of an acrobatic,gravity defying pacific Sailfish, but I couldn’t day dream long for we were just about to arrive on the grounds and set out our lines.
It wasn’t long before our mate Mariano was hollering left line left line! Right line Right Line! A trio of Sailfish popped up behind the boat and we were able to hook one and enjoy a great fight with a beautiful aerial display right behind the boat. After about a 15 min fight we took some pics and video and released this majestic fish back to the abyss. All day long we repeated this process and truly enjoyed a paradisal day among some of the most gorgeous backdrops on the planet.
Day two was a completely different day. We decided we wanted to dedicate the day to bottom fishing and what an excellent choice it truly was. We hopped aboard the Wingman, made our way out to catch some bait. Once we had enough bait in the boat to last us the day we made a trek to a secretive spot the Capt labeled
We baited up and sent our doomed live bait down a hundred feet to the lair of our target species the dog toothed Snapper also known as the mighty Cubera Snapper. The first strike was quick and violent yet we threw the screws to him and worked him up to the boat. It was a beautiful fish and marked the beginning of what was going to be a big fish day.
Cubera Snappers, Jacks, Amberjacks were all on the hit list and we caught them all on a variety of live baits. The bottom fishing in Costa Rica rivals the bill fishing, make sure if you find yourself in Costa Rica to spend one of your fishing days targeting the hard pulling bottom residents.
We will be going back in April to target some of the largest snook on the planet and test out the SR-6 on world record category Snook.
Cool youtube videos from Justin”s trip to check out.